The single greatest problem with most recruiters in the search business is that they fail to master the art of developing new clients effectively. It’s also the single greatest need if a recruiter is going to learn how to thrive, which is possible even in a down market. It’s kind of like a scuba diver that is enthusiastic about scuba diving, but he has yet to master the art of properly breathing through the oxygen equipment. He’ll enthusiastically drown as he enthusiastically goes on his next diving trip. His intentions are there, but it just doesn’t work for him. The intentions of winning are there for many recruiters right now, but they have yet to master their “marketing equipment” properly.
Client development is based on developing a gravity approach…being able to attract clients to you. It is more of a marketing approach on a macro level, with some sales techniques thrown in to actually bring closure to the event. But the bottom line is that people are either going to hire you or not…they will make the decision on their own, and if you push them, they will push back. But here are three things you can do to influence the decision of a buying decision-maker:
Remember that you sell more search services if you can draw people to you rather than chase after them. By asking the right questions, by viewing your role as a “management consultant” rather than a “headhunter”, you automatically separate yourself from your competitors and place yourself in a partnering role with your prospect rather than a selling role. And maybe some day, if you close enough deals, you can learn to scuba dive after all.
Copyright © 2004 Scott Love
Scott Love is a syndicated columnist, an author, and the most frequently-published trainer in the search and staffing industry. He improves the performance of recruiters and recruiting managers regardless of the economy. To book him for your next meeting, call him at 1-828-225-7700. His speaking clients include large search firm franchises, independently owned staffing and search firms and major staffing industry trade associations.